Freeze continues as snow traps vehicles

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Media captionAmbulance rescued on snowy road in Basingstoke

Freezing temperatures are continuing into the weekend after snow once again left many motorists stuck in their vehicles overnight.

Highways England said police had worked until 02:00 GMT on Saturday to free vehicles from the M3 near Basingstoke.

And Kent Police tweeted it had had an “incredibly busy night” with “numerous” collisions and stranded cars.

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The Met Office said temperatures could reach -16C (3F) in Scotland on Saturday night but that Sunday should be milder.

Highways England South East operations manager Robert Bell said: “We have every sympathy for drivers who found themselves stranded in the severe weather.

“Safety is our top priority and our teams of gritters and snow ploughs, supported by our traffic officers, worked through the night to keep the roads treated.”

Disruption on the roads continued in Kent on Saturday, with local highways officers tweeting that drivers may not be able to access vehicles abandoned overnight on the A2045 “due to the continued risk of falling trees”.

However the A249, which was closed overnight on Friday, has now reopened.

Services on South Western Railway – which runs trains from London as far west as Exeter – could face disruption until midday on Saturday after “a band of heavy snow”, National Rail warned.

Yellow weather warnings for snow and ice are expected to remain in place across the UK until noon on Saturday.

Pitch inspections

The weather has also affected this weekend’s football programme, with Saturday’s match between Port Vale and Tranmere Rovers postponed because of a frozen pitch.

Five Scottish League One and Two matches have also been postponed.

Several of Saturday’s matches will be subject to pitch inspections on Saturday morning but fans heading for matches can check for the latest updates on postponements on the BBC Sport website.

London City Airport cancelled or diverted several flights on Friday evening because of heavy snowfall but normal services have now resumed.

The airport said any concerned passengers should “check their flight status in advance” with their airline.

Bristol airport also closed its runway due to snow on Friday. Services are expected to return to normal on Saturday, but the airport said there may be some further delays due to the de-icing of runways.

Cardiff airport was also anticipating some disruption “due to adverse weather”.

Image copyright Gareth Fuller/PA
Image caption The A2045 in Walderslade is closed due to falling trees

Southern England bore the brunt of Friday’s fresh snowfall, with the Met Office recording snow at a depth of 19cm (7.5in) at RAF Odiham near Basingstoke on Friday evening.

Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital made an appeal for nursing staff within walking distance to help, as it faced staffing issues when the town’s roads becoming gridlocked on Friday.

Temperatures fell to their lowest level this winter in the early hours of Friday, with Braemar, Aberdeenshire, dropping to -15.4C (6F).

This is the lowest in the UK since 2012 – when temperatures fell to -15.6C in Holbeach, Lincolnshire.

What’s the weekend forecast?

BBC weather presenter Helen Willetts said there was lying snow in many parts of the UK, and the ice risk remained high through Saturday night and into Sunday morning.

Snow showers would ease in the later part of the day, but the weather is expected to turn very cold overnight, with experts predicting “the coldest night of the winter so far”.

Temperatures even in cities such as London and Birmingham could fall to a “very unusual” -4 or -5, with -12 expected over the snowfields in Scotland.

However Sunday will mark “a day of change” with milder air pushing in bringing heavy rain and some windy conditions in the coming week.

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Media captionTravel disruption could continue into Saturday and Sunday

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